(focus on: global observing systems for toxic and persistent pollutants, harmonization of monitoring systems, coupled atmosphere-ocean-terrestrial models validation, evaluation of ecosystem response to regional/global emission changes, support to policy implementation)
During the last two decades progress has been made in the understanding of the cycling of persistent pollutants between different environmental compartments. Climate variability is considered one of the major drivers influencing the transport patterns of highly toxic and persistent pollutants from the emission sources to aquatic and terrestrial receptors. Several conventions and international programs such as the World Meteorological Organization's Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW), the European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP) supporting the CLRTAP, the GMOS supporting the Minamata Convention, the Global Monitoring Plan (GMP) supporting the Stockholm Convention and various Research Infrastructure (ESFRI) initiatives of the European Commission have made substantial efforts to establish data centres and quality control programs to enhance integration of atmospheric composition measurements from different national and regional networks, and to establish observational sites in under-sampled, remote regions around the world.
The overall goal of Strand-3 is to develop a new paradigm for real-time monitoring of the quality of our environment with reference to the contamination of air, water and terrestrial ecosystems by persistent pollutants. The overarching objective of this strand is the development of a fully integrated system of advanced sensors (based on nano-structured advanced materials) for major persistent pollutants coupled with state-of-the-art interoperable systems for data sharing and data management. Currently the prohibitive investment and management/maintenance costs of monitoring systems for these pollutants limit our capacity to develop sustainable observational systems for long-term monitoring programmes. The aim of Strand-3 is to produce new advanced monitoring technologies to increase the geographical coverage (number of monitoring sites) of our current global monitoring networks for persistent pollutants at rural (and background) sites as well as in contaminated (highly impacted) areas that coupled with advanced GCI will support policy makers and stakeholders in the implementation of major international conventions and programmes.